Thursday 5th July. Utila – Rio Cangrejo.
Up early this morning to take a ferry back across to the mainland. The German girls knew where the best seats on the ferry were – right up on the front deck, Titanic style. This made for a great trip back across to the mainland with great views over to the mountain ranges behind La Ceiba. My next job was to make my way across to Rio Cangrejo where I planned to spend the next few days rafting and hiking through nature. First I had to find the local bus that would take me out to my accommodation. I did think I had found it but it turned out that they only wanted to take me to the crossroads where you could enter the national park. From there I had to wait another hour until the proper bus turned up to take me down the bumpy road beside the River Cangrejal (crab) to my accommodation. I immediately fell in love with the place and slipped right into a good balance of relaxing and strenuous activity.
Friday 6th July. Rio Cangrejo – White Water Rafting.
The big thing to do when you are in Rio Cangrejal is to experience White Water Rafting. It is supposed to be the best rafting in all of Central America. So I signed up for the tour that was heading out this morning. Because the river was pretty low, the tour was more a mix of hiking alongside the river, floating down the river in our life-vests and finally, doing some rafting – 3kms down the river over some pretty tame rapids. The surroundings were still amazing which made the experience really special, and I still somehow managed to fall out of the boat! In the afternoon I went out on a hike with a nice Swiss couple to a lovely viewpoint and we had a swim in the hotel’s natural pool when we got back.
Saturday 7th July: Rio Cangrejal.
Had a nice walk today in the Pico Bonita National Park which is on the other side of the Rio Cangrejal. The NP entrance is only about ½ km down the road and I only needed to pay the 180 limpira fee to enter the park and the ranger explained how I could make the 3hr round trip hike to see a couple of waterfalls. To enter the National Park you need to cross over on a suspension bridge which is high above the low level of the water at the moment but in the wet season, apparently the water gets very high and the height of the bridge is really needed! This is very hard to imagine though at the moment! Once I was on the other side of the river, I had about 30 minutes to walk until I reached the first waterfall. It was in a beautiful place, very quiet and remote. I spent quite a bit of time there reading my book. Unfortunately, a young local kid started following me through the park when I continued walking, trying to be my guide. This kind of spoiled my solitude! But still, the walk was still lovely to the second waterfall which was much more impressive.